Hazard Mitigation Planning

Joint HMP-MVP Plan

Weston & Sampson worked with the City of Waltham to prepare a joint Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) to mitigate the effects of natural hazards, and a Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Plan to increase resilience against climate change. We leveraged the common steps of both processes, including collecting and reviewing background information on existing conditions and previous natural hazard events. We assisted the city in establishing a municipal planning team whose responsibilities included guiding the public engagement process, and reviewing and incorporating recommendations from the public into the city’s proposed hazard mitigation and climate resilience strategies. We engaged stakeholders through an all-day facilitated Community Resilience Building (CRB) Workshop, following guidance from The Nature Conservancy, and we assisted the city in hosting the general public in two information-sharing listening sessions. These meetings with stakeholders and the public were essential components of both the HMP and MVP process.

The city’s plan describes the multiple natural hazards potentially affecting the community; including flooding, winter storms, high winds, fires and geologic hazards; and considers how the effects of climate change will intensify these hazards through more extreme precipitation, more droughts, extreme weather events, and increased temperatures. The plan identifies critical features of the city most at risk; including critical infrastructure, vulnerable populations, and natural resources; and assesses the vulnerabilities of these features to natural hazards and climate change. The plan also identifies and analyzes a comprehensive range of specific mitigation actions and includes a list of prioritized hazard mitigation projects that best meet the City of Waltham’s needs for multiple hazard damage reduction.

We prepared the HMP-MVP in accordance with FEMA guidelines for Hazard Mitigation Planning and the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs’ requirements for Waltham to become a “Certified MVP Community.” With this designation and a completed plan, Waltham will be eligible for FEMA grant funding and Massachusetts MVP Action Grants, which are used to implement priority strategies.

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Posted in Climate Resilience, Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness and tagged , , .